For those that have listened to this station for a long time, you may have noticed that I was gone for most of the pandemic. When a recession hits (really ANY recession), advertising budgets are usually one of the first things to go for any business. Being in the advertising business, we feel every little bump in the road, and when a society-changing event like COVID-19 happens, media outlets need to make tough decisions. Back in April 2020, I was one of those tough decisions. There was no bad blood; it was a necessary evil to keep the doors open and maintain the jobs of many of my colleagues. I was sad, but I understood.
During the pandemic, I was a bit lost. I took the requisite time during that first summer to slow down, reevaluate things, and spend some time doing things I wanted to do. I got out on my boat, I spent time with some of my close friends at the time, and I got a bunch of sleep. But when the reality set in that I was unlikely to get my career back, I started to slip mentally. I missed having a purpose in my community and I missed being part of a team. I missed the camaraderie of working in an office, and I missed being an important part of listeners’ days.
And this is no smoke… but I missed being able to help people. Entertaining people is a perk of my job, and I believe it has some value in many folks’ days. If I can play some good tunes and provide some good information and laughs interspersed in there, I made the world better. Maybe not a lot, but a little, and any movement in the “good” direction can add up.
But there are days when my position allows me to do some real good, and I really missed that. This past Thursday & Friday, my cup was really filled up by helping St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. That organization is absolutely magical, and the work they do will have far-reaching repercussions in medical history for centuries to come. To be even a small part of that, like a “Partner In Hope” is truly amazing, but when I get to help collects hundreds of those during the course of my workday? I’m really honored to have that responsibility.
To be honest, I don’t have a lot of people in my corner doing this job. It requires hard work and preparation, and that costs me personally. Perhaps I won’t get to do it forever, but for the time being, it is truly rewarding. The good I do is abstract (I’m not performing surgeries over here), but it is good. I help my community, and I’m very thankful to be privileged enough to get to do it.
~Jake from 98.7 The Bull